FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 25, 2013
FLORIDA AIR EMISSIONS HIT ALL-TIME LOW IN 2012
~DEP's continued regulation, improvements by major sources leads to cleaner Florida air~
TALLAHASSEE –In 2012, air emissions from
Florida’s industrial facilities hit their lowest levels since the Florida
Department of Environmental Protection began tracking them in 1985, due to the
Department's oversight and facilities' use of new technology to curb
Since 2010, annual air
emissions have declined nearly 22 percent to 412,628 tons. A decade ago, Florida’s industrial facilities
emitted nearly 1.1 million tons of pollutants annually. The result is that Florida's
air quality has improved and Florida can boast that its air quality is among
the best in the nation.
Earlier this year, the American
Lung Association released its 2013 State of the Air study, which reported that
Florida experienced zero unhealthy days for ozone pollution during the
three-year study period. In addition, the Association ranked four Florida
cities among the 16 cleanest nationwide for both year-round and short-term
"This is great news for
Florida—fewer air emissions mean better air quality for Floridians and visitors,"
said Brian Accardo, Director of the Division of Air Resource Management.
"Department staff is focused on ensuring regulated businesses comply with
stringent emission limits and use the latest technology to curb pollution.”
The Department also recognizes
the benefit of incentivizing additional reductions. One successful initiative
led by the Department in 2012 was the Title V
Fee Holiday, which reduced emissions by nearly 1,900 tons while saving Florida
small businesses more than $300,000 statewide. The Department's initiative allowed
businesses that curbed emissions to have a $5,000 fee waived. Title V is a
federal program run by states in which facilities pay to offset the regulatory
cost of controlling air emissions from certain industrial facilities. Ultimately,
281 businesses kept their 2012 air emissions low enough to qualify for the fee
This year, if major industrial facilities
emit fewer air emissions than authorized by permit, the Department will allow
those facilities to pay fees only on the pollutants actually emitted.
Previously, some facilities would pay fees on allowed emissions. The
Department’s new approach will provide businesses a financial incentive to reduce
pollution. Continued use of traditional regulatory and incentive-based measures
such as these will assure that Florida is as prepared as possible to comply with increasingly
stringent national clean air standards.
The Department's website allows
the public to monitor updated air quality information through its Spatial Air Quality
System. Web users are able to access updated air quality data as
reported by Florida’s statewide network of air quality monitors. Additional
information about Florida's air quality is available through the Department's Division
of Air Resource Management website.
Click here to view a
year-by-year list of air emissions in Florida.